Whether smoking cigarettes is used as a social tool to chat someone up at the bar, or a perceived way of reducing stress, tobacco use continues to be problematic in the LGBT community.
Hollywood and LGBT-centric marketing campaigns have glamorized smoking, attempting to link sex appeal with the habit. Smoking, however, continues to cause more deaths each year than HIV, alcohol, illegal drugs, car accidents, and firearms combined.
“Quit With Crush” is a campaign driven by Las Vegas-based tobacco prevention organization CRUSH, and features a video of a young gay go-getter who has come to terms with his sexuality and is feeling good about his life after years of struggle. The next logical step is quitting smoking, a habit he picked up in his less confident days. He cares about himself now more than ever, and won’t pulled down by the illnesses, like lung cancer, that cigarettes bring.
The campaign targets the habit as an especially significant problem in the LGBT community, an idea that the CDC backed up recently when they found that non-heteros smoke at higher percentages across the board.
“Gay, bisexual and transgender men are at least two times more likely to smoke than heterosexual men,” says Malcolm Ahlo, CRUSH Program Director. “We’re hoping people across the country will share this video to draw attention to this issue affecting the LGBT community and give those thinking about quitting the nudge they need to take the first step.”
Check out the video here, in which this guy shows just how attractive giving up smoking can be: